When shopping for teak outdoor furniture, it is critical to be informed, knowledgeable and equipped to choose superior pieces based on personal needs and values. Regardless of brand or manufacturer, there are commonalities to consider regarding quality, reliability, sustainability, trust and ethics in order to make informed choices. We have developed a six-aspect key to purchasing high-quality teak outdoor furniture that will last for generations.
If you have questions about any of this information, our Furniture Specialists are here to help. Reach out to us.
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NOT ALL TEAK IS CREATED EQUAL
Teak commands a premium price in the timber market due to its natural properties – but not all teak is created equal. Teak is graded by trained graders into one of three categories: A, B or C. Premium teak outdoor furniture is manufactured with Grade A teak coming from the center of the log called the heartwood. It is free of knots, sap wood and cracks, and has tight, straight grain. Furniture made from lower grades of teak will not withstand outdoor exposure as long, can crack or rot over time and is more likely to be damaged by pests.
The term Grade A is used very liberally and means different things to different brands. Makers that adhere to using the highest-quality materials are able to provide complete and transparent information about materials, sources and performance.
BELOW THE SURFACE
The true quality of teak wood is easiest to discern in its natural, unfinished state. Many makers use finishes, stains or paints to cover up lower-grade wood or hide inferior markings such as sap wood, knots, uneven grain, discoloration or evidence of pests. Any imperfections intrinsic in lower-quality timber can manifest themselves in warping, rotting and excessive wear over time. The most durable furnishings will use only the highest-quality raw materials before surface treatments or finishes are applied.
CONSTRUCTION IS KEY
Quality materials are just one aspect of superior teak outdoor furniture. Equally critical to lasting durability are the preparation of materials and construction methods. Time-tested standards for solid teak furniture include strict adherence to moisture content, understanding of grain expansion and contraction, and employing precision-fitted joinery. Wood-to-wood joints which are milled accurately and locked with grooved dowels allow joints to expand and contract equally without loosening connections. Finger joints and lapped joints can strengthen stress points and improve stability. Lamination should not be used as a substitute for solid timber.
RECOGNIZE QUALITY METALS
Outdoor environments are particularly harsh on metals; only those with premium composition or finishes will endure exposure to the elements. Exterior grade 304 stainless steel or marine grade 316 stainless steel last in outdoor spaces and are resistant to chemicals, salt spray and chlorine. Solid brass and powder-coated metals are also resistant to rust and corrosion that can irreparably damage lower-quality hardware and destabilize furniture.
THE FINE PRINT
Makers of premium furnishings who control all aspects of production form sourcing material to final construction are uniquely positioned to stand behind their quality. Buying directly from the maker also improves chances that repair or replacement parts are available, should they be needed in the future. Choosing a reputable brand with a guarantee, expertise and history in the industry is a way to protect an investment.
INVEST IN SUSTAINABILITY
Teak (Tectona grandis) trees are a natural resource vital to economies, industries and ecosystems and, as such, require careful protection. Sustainable managed forestry practices are critical to this species, which has a long growth cycle and highly prized timber. Consumers who invest with companies committed to renewable resources and zero waste influence best practices across the industry.
Shop Our Collections
From the classic Seneca to the modern Summit, we have teak outdoor furniture collections to complement any decor.